While our politicians tell us the country is broke, they themselves are doing fine.
In the midst of debt ceiling hysteria, President Obama and the Democrats bragged they’d raised an eye-popping $86 million so far for his presidential campaign.
The various Republican candidates who have reported their cash have raised about $35 million so far, but it’s early yet.
Meanwhile the Republicans oppose any revenue-raising or loophole-closing that would be favored by a majority of Americans. Republicans continue to insist that increased taxes on the wealthiest would be job-killers, even though there’s no evidence to support their position.
For his part, President Obama, in an effort to appease Republicans, offered up a variety of cuts to Social Security and Medicaid that would be opposed by a majority of Americans.
Cutting services for those that need it most is what Obama calls “shared sacrifice,” though no one who could actually afford it is actually being asked to make any sacrifices.
As to the major challenges facing the nonrich – joblessness and foreclosure – those are beyong the skill and imagination of our leaders to grapple with.
The Republican strategy seems to be standing pat in the belief that the president will eventually cave in.
The president’s strategy appears to be to tie the aged, poor and vulnerable to the train tracks and then blame the Republicans when the train runs them over.
President Obama’s campaign manager, Jim Messina, was proud that most of the $86 million was coming from small donors. I don’t doubt that a big chunk of that money comes from people who are justifiably scared stiff of turning the country back over to the Republicans, who never complained about the deficits when the previous occupant of the White House when he was running them up.
I understand the big donors. They get access and influence. But do the small donors have any influence? Do these small donors really believe that having the aged and infirm give up a chunk of their security amounts to sharing sacrifice? Can they make their voices heard along with their $5 donations? Or do they just have to go along with the president and the Democrats and whatever deal they make?
On Saturday morning we got news that the president would not appoint the stalwart consumer advocate to head the agency she dreamed up to protect financial consumers, and which she has been working to set up.
I wonder whose interests the president was thinking about when he made that decision – his Wall Street and corporate donors or those small donors his campaign manager was bragging about?